WATCH OUT FOR MICE!!! this book was soooooo cheesy that i was truly afraid that i would be over run! i mean, get me a mousetrap!!

BUT– i can’t say that i hated it! the story was broken into 2 time periods– one took place in the 1300s and it told the story of the “original” Romeo and Giulietta; the other took place in modern times where a girl called Julie (a supposed descendant of THE Juliet) goes to Italy on a Shakespeare-based treasure hunt (shock of all shocks– she falls for a guy called Romeo!!).

the modern-day part was sooooo over the top cheesy in all respects– the characters, the dialogue, the completely unbelievable situations that Julie and her twin sister, Janice, got into– it was almost torture to read at some points (the whole virginity ritual, dad back from the grave and mafia leader grandma required actual out loud guffaws). Julie was a HORRIBLY whiney character with a TOTAL “why me?” complex– i wanted to pound the crap out of her the whole way thru. the comparison of this adventure to The DaVinci Code should be taken as an insult by Dan Brown!

HOWEVER, the 1300 story was fascinating and, according to the author, based on the original story of Romeo and Juliet that Shakespeare himself used to write his play. Giulietta is portrayed as a very strong woman determined to take revenge on her enemy, the evil Salimbeni, who had most of her family killed. By chance, she meets up with Romeo as she is being smuggled to safety by Friar Lorenzo and the rest is history. i found myself racing thru the modern-day shite to get to this part of the story that is just as romantic and tragic as the one that we all know and love! it is hard to believe the same author wrote both parts!

over all i think a 2.5 but i will say 3 because the Romeo and Giulietta story was worth it enough to sift thru all of the “whine” and cheese!